with light therapy
Hospitals in Europe are offering a ‘new’ treatment – light therapy.
I say ‘new’ – because the Greeks were using light and sun to aid healing over two thousand years ago; they knew the benefits of light therapy when you were sick.
Now, as well as hospitals, some over-the-counter-remedies also make use of light. It’s all happening!
The first time I saw light being used as therapy was at La Roche Posay. I had gone there to get help with skin problems caused by cancer drugs. Showing me around, Dr. Lemoine said “we are researching light therapy to treat scars from burns”, and ushered me into a room with a soft coach, and batteries of different coloured lights shining down from the ceiling.
He explained that this wasn’t designed for my conditions, but as I was a journalist would I like to experience the different lights that their other patients would receive? So they left me there for half an hour, whilst different lights played across the ceiling. I felt relaxed and happy as I came out – and promptly forgot all about it.
But I did notice as I travelled around Europe for the best treatment to help me with side effects, that many of the state-of-the-art clinics I visited seemed to be expermenting with light. For instance, in Germany Klinic Bad Sulza had banks of special lights to treat patients with Psoriasis.
Now, Mentholatum, the pharmaceutical company with lots of innovative ideas, has produced two small, hand-held torch-like devices, which might help with the problem of spots and acne, particularly if these are a problem due to cancer treatment.
Intrigued? Will light therapy work for you?
Possibly. Especially if you suffer from Acne or Cold Sores.
The Mentholatum range has two little gadgets using special lights, which are targeted on those who suffer from either of these distressing conditions. As they say, “light has the potential to induce effects that are either desirable (diagnostic, therapeutic) or undersirable (toxic). It is the selection of light of a specific wavelength, intensity and dose which results in the controlled therapeutic and beneficial use of light therapy”.
This emits what is called ‘blue light therapy’, which has been used extensively for years by dermatologists for the successful treatment of spots, acne and blemishes. It has been scientifically proven that blue light at the specific wavelength of 415nm kills spot causing bacteria.
Part of the OXY range, Clearlight harnesses the healing power of blue-light technology in a safe and convenient hand-held device for home use. The Clearlight penetrates to the root of P. acnes, killing spot-causing bacteria and helping prevent spots from erupting.
It’s kind to skin, as the light emits NO heat, and NO harmful UV rays. It does NOT cause drying, peeling or discomfort, either.
You use Clearlight to treat active breakouts, or whenever you feel a spot erupting, to visibly reduce the appearance of spots and acne. It can be used with your daily spot treatment, and whenever you experience a spot outbreak.
To use, all you do is press the power button and place the Clearlight device over the spot. Listen for the beep indicating that the therapeutic light is at work. The device will automatically switch itself off at the end of the 3-minute treatment cycle. Use twice daily, morning and evening, for 3 minutes until your spot has cleared. It costs £24.99.
But, do not use Oxy Clearlight if you suffer from a photosensitive disorder (sensitivity to sunlight) or are taking any medication that prevents you from being exposed to sunlight.
For Cold Sores they have a device called LipZor to help heal cold sores.
LipZor is a patented, portable electronic device using light therapy to treat these nasty erruptions. The device uses ‘light’ of a specific wavelength: 1072 nanomtres – to target tissues around the cold sore and improve immunological function, helping boost and speed up the light healing process.
The makers also claim that if you use the device as soon as you feel that ominous tingle, LipZor might help prevent an outbreak. Zapping the outbreak area with this portable device you stimulate the body’s immunological function and help speed up the healing process.
In clinical trials healing time was reduced by up to three days, and can be used during the tingling phase, or later on, when that horrid blister breaks out.
Unfortunately, just shining an electric torch on a cold sore isn’t going to do much good. The science behind this gadget says that the wavelength it delivers is critical, as the light needs to hit the tissue in and around the cold sore, to be absorbed by the photoreceptors within the tissue cells. But using the right wavelengths helps Nature promote the body’s own healing response.
LipZor costs £39, and is obtainable in good chemists, whose advice you should follow when first using the device.
Fast forward a few years
Currently Scientists are expermenting on using light to target and destroy cancer cells in mice.
Researchers have designed a light-based therapy that allows the selective destruction of tumour cells in mice without harming surrounding normal tissue. This method of cancer therapy could theoretically work against tumours in humans, such as those of the breast, lung, prostate, as well as cancer cells in the blood such as leukemias, say scientists from the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of NIH.
Current photodynamic therapy is not specific for cancer cells, resulting in damage to surrounding normal tissue. Therefore, the researchers in this study set out to develop a light therapy that could more accurately target cancer cells while sparing a greater number of normal cells, using photoimmunotherapy, or PIT. This uses light to rapidly and selectively kill cancer cells.